Hell Let Loose
Developer: Black Matter Pty Ltd.
Genre(s): Action, Shooter, FPS
Platform: PC (Steam)
Age Rating: N/A
Release Date: 27.07.2021
A code was provided for review purposes
Strategise before taking to the battlefield in the WW2 shooter Hell Let Loose. But should you enlist to play this 50 v 50 multiplayer experience? Find out in this Rapid Review.
Preparing for War
It’s worth mentioning straight away that those wanting a fast-paced and casual shooter with features such as score multipliers, upgrades and buffs should steer clear of Hell Let Loose. I must admit that this arcade type of shooter is what I tend to play when I take on the FPS genre but ever wanting to broaden my game horizons, I took to Hell Let Loose to try something new; a game where planning for battle is as important as the battle itself. The game uses mostly community-hosted servers to join the battle, with the “enlist” button on the main menu showing a list of servers with various languages, game modes and suggested game experience. It was then up to me to deploy and select my role type.
There’s an impressive selection of roles to choose from, each with their own weapons and abilities, from specialist options such as Tank Commanders and Snipers to a more common FPS role such as a rifleman which is who I mostly played as during review. Then, I joined one of several units. Units essentially break down the massive 50-player army into smaller teams.
Though microphone use is encouraged, the majority of the games I played had my teammates microphones disabled which did hinder communication but a clear breakdown of capture points and waypoints still allowed us to achieve the goal of breaking past the enemy line together. I then had to choose where to deploy myself on a grid-based map which effectively showed spawn points, player locations and enemy lines. Though there is a large amount of information shown at once, varying colours and the ability to zoom into each quadrant makes it easy to navigate the map.
Once deployed on the battlefield, the overarching goal was simple; push through the enemy line and gain control points. With so many players within the team, everyone’s role was important with the varying character types contributing in different ways to the team’s success or – often in my case -failure. In one round, I played as a sniper, quietly passing through destroyed buildings to gain the high ground in some depilated barn. In another, I was a rifleman, joining my team in the final push through no man’s land, jumping over barbed wire and watching my comrades fall beside me.
Whatever the role, I found controls to be responsive with weapons behaving appropriately. Death occurs less frequently than arcade-based shooters and as such, it feels much more impactful. I found strategic positioning to be vital in avoiding the bullets and shells of war with small advances through the barbed wire and bushes of the battlefield proving more successful than wildly running through the open area. Oftentimes, I was reminded of the stealth genre, sneaking up on my opponents and shooting them with the one-hit one-kill bullet. This harsh low-health equally feels both immensely satisfying with the few enemy kills I managed whilst also being incredibly frustrating when I had advanced to the battlefield to only be instantly killed by an enemy soldier some distance away.
Devestation of War
With a film grain effect and detailed realistic graphics and lighting choices, Hell Let Loose eloquently captures the devastation of war. Running through the mud-filled countryside fields, past destroyed barns with a plane swooping through the skies is really quite immersive. There’s no grand orchestral soundtrack to Hell Let Loose; instead sounds of artillery, the whir of an aeroplane overhead and the mechanical purrs of a tank set the soundscape for battle.
To cater for the 100 players, the historically accurate maps provide ample space for everyone. What this does mean, however, is that for most of the game, more time is spent travelling to the battlefield rather than battling. I struggled to utilise the armoured vans and military jeeps at my disposal, as my team journeyed ahead without me. This meant that I spent a lot of time walking across barren fields or through forests and whilst this allowed me to prepare myself and take in the scenery, I did desire for that little bit more action.
Hell Let Loose’s more tactical and slower-paced approach to the first-person shooter genre isn’t for me but I do believe that it will provide many hours of enjoyment with the correct audience. Full of stunning visuals and historical accuracy, Hell Let Loose’s depiction of WW2 warfare is the best I’ve seen in the FPS genre.
Rapid Reviews Rating
4 out of 5
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